WWE's psychological crusade to get Roman Reigns positive reactions is in its fourth year. And now Reigns is out here using Jedi mind tricks in the form of rhetorical questions to toy with wrestling fans across the internet.
Despite a slew of tactics, WWE still can't wash out the boos that continue to double down against Reigns. This stubbornness has arguably damaged the Reigns character, and both fans and WWE legends alike seem to think it would be best for all parties if Reigns turned heel.
"It's a weird question because aren't I already a heel? If I garner that reaction, what's the point? It's already happening," Reigns told ESPN. If I'm already being booed, then why try to get booed?"
For the most part, this has been WWE's consistent stance. The reaction to Reigns changes every night. Look no further than the latest episode of RAW where Reigns received a hero's welcome from the Little Rock, Arkansas crowd. But this Sunday at Money in the Bank, Chicago will treat him like he's Steve Bartman in a Pistons jersey.
With each city having its own distinct reaction, assigning Reigns a clear morality may be a fool's errand.
"I have a great opportunity -- because I'm a gray-area guy -- to do a little bit of everything. I'm in a good place to do whatever I want and just play with this character and not just be a heel or a face -- I feel my character can be so much more than that," he said.
A lot of fans think this "all noise is good noise" stamp is a cop-out, and they aren't totally wrong. But it's not so much WWE sneaking out of the issue as it is them not having a better solution. At this point, Reigns working babyface exclusive is out of the question. He could have better luck as a heel, but clearly, WWE makes money from fans who adore him. In the eyes of Vince McMahon, there no real incentive to turn him heel, other than appeasing a crowd of vocal fans.
So instead, WWE keeps Reigns in the middle.1comments
However, they clearly prefer him to be a good guy. The Shield Reunion, Intercontinental win over the Miz, his fighting champion schtick ahead of WrestleMania, and now his feud with WWE's purest heel, Jinder Mahal, indicates that WWE is actively trying to get him cheered. But when it doesn't happen, they can shrug it off as being in the wrong city.
Sunday will be a very interesting data point in the Reigns trendline. Chicago is going to hate him, but does that mean they'll love Jinder? We'll see.